Société Générale Corporate & Investment Banking and Calyon have closed a US$42.5mn financing for Digitel Mobile Philippines. The facility is to partly finance the Phase 5 GSM network development project of Digitel Mobile.


The financing consists of two tranches: a US$19mn Coface financing with partial reinsurance from Efic and a US$23.5mn Sinosure-backed loan.
Both tranches for Digitel Mobile were arranged under the guarantee of JG Summit Holdings.


The Coface financing was signed in August 2005 for an amount of US$19mn with seven years repayment and partial reinsurance from Efic on which SG CIB and Calyon acted as joint lead arrangers. The Sinosure financing for US$23.5mn with seven years repayment on which SG CIB acted as lead arranger and Calyon as co-lead arranger was signed in December 2005. Both banks are also lenders on both facilities.


This transaction is an important deal in the Philippines and contains many firsts:


  •  First access to the export finance market for Digitel Mobile as borrower.
  •  First reinsurance agreement between Coface and Efic.
  •  First Sinosure financing for Digitel Mobile and the JG Summit group as a whole and also the first time Sinosure has accepted direct corporate risk in the Philippines.
    The deal is a multisource financing involving sourcing from France, Australia and China.


Digitel Mobile is one of the major mobile phone operators in the Philippines with its Sun Cellular brand. The country has witnessed strong mobile subscriber growth in the past few years. The guarantor, JG Summit Holdings, is one of the most prominent conglomerates in the Philippines with business interests in telecommunications, air transportation, banking, food manufacturing, hotels, petrochemical, power generation, publishing, real estate and property development as well as textile. Alcatel is the supplier for the French and Australian content and Huawei Technologies is the supplier for the Chinese content.


Despite the availability of different financing alternatives, Digitel Mobile decided to go for export finance to partially finance the project due to the innovative structure and attractive financing terms offered. This financing solution also provides Digitel Mobile with significant advantages by allowing it to diversify its sources of funding whilst achieving longer tenors than are generally available in the syndicated loan market.